A Word From The Cook

“Stuffed Grape Leaves are a classic anchor to a Mediterranean Menu Dinner Party. Discover what more you can do on this stuffed grape leaves recipe. Try our entire Mediterranean Menu featuring cookbook author/chef, Erin Coopey.”


Prep Time:

1 Hour 45 Minutes


Makes about 40


  • 1 16-Ounce jar grape leaves
  • 6 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus 1 tbsp for drizzling
  • 4 Scallions, minced
  • ⅓ Cup fresh mint, minced
  • ⅓ Cup fresh parsley, minced
  • 3 Cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 Cup Arborio Rice, rinsed and drained
  • 2 Cups water
  • 1 Teaspoon Sea Salt
  • ¼ Teaspoon freshly ground Black Pepper
  • ½ Teaspoon lemon zest, grated
  • 2 Cups hot water
  • Juice of 1 lemon (approx. 3 tbsp)
  1. Step 1 – Rinse and Separate Grape Leaves
    1. Drain grape leaves, then place them in a large bowl of cold water and soak for 5-10 minutes. Drain and pat dry. Trim away any thick ribs.
    2. Stack the leaves shiny side down into piles. 
  2. Step 2 – Prepare Filling
    1. Heat olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the scallions, mint, and parsley; sauté for 2 minutes or until the scallions are soft. Add the garlic and sauté for an additional 30 seconds.
    2. Add the rice and stir-fry in the sautéed vegetables and herbs for 1 minute.
    3. Add the water, salt, pepper, and lemon zest; stir to mix.
    4. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes or until the rice has softened and plumped. Remove from heat, uncover and allow to cool.
  3. Step 3 – Roll, Steam, and Serve
    1. When the rice has cooled enough to handle, spoon about 2 teaspoons on each grape leaf (don’t over stuff); fold the sides of each leaf over the filling and then roll it from the bottom to the top.
    2. Repeat with each leaf. Try to roll each leaf neatly so the stuffing doesn’t fall out.
    3. Use a few torn leaves to cover the bottom of a heavy pot. Place the stuffed dolmades into the pot in concentric circles, starting on the outside.
    4. Make a second layer if necessary.
    5. Pour the hot water and lemon juice over the dolmades. Drizzle with remaining olive oil.
    6. Place a snug fitting up-turned plate over the top of the dolmades to keep them submerged.
    7. Cover the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour. Turn off the heat and let them rest for 10 minutes or so before serving.
    8. Serve with Avgolemono Sauce (Greek Egg-Lemon Sauce)!
    9. Find more of our Mediterranean Menu Dinner Party recipes you can make and share with your friends!